The ranking Democrat on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri, is pressing the SBA and Commerce Department for information on how they are following up GAO recommendations to reduce duplication and overlap in their programs to assist small business development.

She noted that GAO in 2012 and again this year pointed out that dozens of such programs exist in those agencies as well as in Agriculture and HUD. The auditors recommended that the agencies consistently collect information to track those programs and to evaluate them to determine whether they are meeting performance goals.

In similar letters to SBA and Commerce, she said that some progress has been made but the recommendations have not been fully implemented. She asked them to explain how their programs differ from the others, what data they collect to establish performance metrics, the status of the open GAO recommendations, and the status of their program evaluation frameworks.